When we last left our favorite on-again-off-again couple things were about to get to a new level of messy that even if we’re used to watching multiple murders per episode, we’ve still never seen before. Just as a reminder, last week saw Dasha potentially severed the intense violent bond between Villanelle and Eve once and for all.
Eve made the journey to Poland to find Niko and reconnect with him, only to watch someone shove a rake through his throat and die right in front of her. Dasha made sure the calling card left on the rake sounded like Villanelle, after all, who else would want her husband dead?
Alas, if you were expecting some big confrontation then this episode will be a letdown. Yes, it did serve to build some of that nail-biting suspense we love but was also completely one-sided, meaning there was no Eve what’s so ever and we have no idea what happened to her after she watched her husband die in front of her.
But we’ll just have to wait until next week because now it’s all about Villanelle.
After Konstantin gives her information on her family Villanelle heads back to Russia to find them and, using her trademark manners, introduces herself by walking into their home looking through their fridge, and sitting in their kitchen until her brother finally arrives. While he recognizes her right away, his step-father, step-brother, his girlfriend, and younger brother are all understandably confused and frankly so are we. It is only when Villanelle’s mother comes in that the tears start to flow and we get some pieces of the story.
Villanelle, or Oksana as she is referred to by her real name in this episode, was dropped off at an orphanage by her mother when the family fell on hard times after her father died. She was only supposed to be there a month, but that’s all the time it took for little Oksana to decide that she wanted to set fire to the orphanage which she then did. The nuns told Oksana’s mother that she died in the fire and had told Oksana that the rest of her family died in a car crash when she was dropped off there.
Now that’s a pretty on-brand background story for Villanelle, but the past trauma doesn’t stop the family from welcoming her into their home. Between the meals, and the Elton John sing-along and Oksana competing in the local harvest festival, it looks like Villanelle could potentially give up her killer instincts and settle down with her family to have a happy quiet life.
Of course, if you’ve ever seen this show before, you know that’s not how this goes.
As she warns her brother Pyotr, she remembers their mother as a very harsh woman and does not readily trust her motives or her accounts of the past. However, when her half brother Bor’ka enters a baking competition at the festival to win the prize money he needs to see Elton John’s farewell tour her suspicions are realized as their mother berates him for embarrassing the family as soon as he loses. From there, Oksana confronts her mother about the past when they are alone in the kitchen late at night. Oksana is asking her mother to care for her, but Tatiana is telling her she wants her to leave and never come back, that this is not her family or her home.
Oksana is clearly disappointed and angry, but she maintains that despite however her mother rationalizes it she was not a bad child and the darkness that she has in her actually comes from Tatiana who is even worse than her. It’s not easy to make someone feel bad for a relentless mass murder but this scene really accomplished that. Knowing Oksana came all this way to meet her mother only to be rejected and gaslit by her will get you enraged on her behalf. Luckily, as she has done ever since her mother left her, Oksana takes care of the problem herself. After she lures her brothers into the barn she kills her mother and destroys the rest of the family in a house explosion as she walks away screaming.
On the train, the next day, our normally stoic Villanelle is practically crying as she’s listening to her music and the episode just ends there. Now we have an extremely emotional and vulnerable Villanelle wanting to belong to someone who will turn back to the woman she’s obsessed with in a matter of time only to be blamed by her for the murder of her husband. Besides the minor backstory we got on Villanelle, this episode really just served to up the stakes. We may not know where Eve is or what she is doing but we can bet that when they next meet that the showdown will be even more vicious and unfortunate than we could have imagined.